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Hi, this is one of our (almost) daily tastings. Santé!

December 18, 2013


Tasting the new Convalmore plus old sparring partner

Just when I had thought there would be no new Convalmore, since the distillery's been closed such a long time ago, the owners are granting us with more than 2,500 bottles of a 1977 at a whopping 58% vol. And with one of our favourite 'retro' labels that's already been used six or seven years ago on another excellent 1977. But first, the old sparring partner...

Convalmore 32 yo 1975/2008 (48%, Douglas Laing, Old Malt Cask, refill hogshead, ref #4246, 202 bottles)

Convalmore 32 yo 1975/2008 (48%, Douglas Laing, Old Malt Cask, refill hogshead, ref #4246, 202 bottles) Four stars and a half Colour: pale gold. Nose: I rather find fresh walnuts and apple peel at first nosing, with a kind of waxy grassiness and touches of 'good' soap, meaning non-scented soap. Maybe also touches of white bread, a few not-too-fragrant flowers and more light grassiness. A little evanescent and indiscernible, I'd say, very discreet and pretty elegant. Mouth: as often with old whiskies, it's the lemon - or another kind of tartness - that saves it from feeling too oaky, which, as a consequence, it isn't. I find a lot of lemon balm, lime juice, green apples, cardamom and then more green spices. Coriander seeds? Some dill too, aniseed, honeydew... I find this very good and greatly vibrant and sherbety. Finish: medium length, lemony, very clean, greatly sharp. Comments: takes some time but it's rewarding if you like... great lemonades? SGP:561 - 89 points.

Convalmore 36 yo 1977/2013 (58%, OB, Special Release, 2680 bottles)

Convalmore 36 yo 1977/2013 (58%, OB, Special Release, 2680 bottles) Five stars Colour: dark gold. Nose: much more happening in this one, this is big, assertive, rather toffee-ish malt whisky where the wood(s) played a much bigger part. Having said that, the walnuts are back in the background, together with some obvious menthol and some medicinal aspects. Antiseptic? A new pack of After Eights? Also ripe kiwis, I think. I like this nose a lot, there's a lot happening. With water: twenty different apples. Also an earthy side's up, maybe. Mouth (neat): big, fat, starting on a rather stunning combination of earth/roots, lemons/grapefruits and tart honeys. Immediate and implacable like only great old whiskies can be. Not much to add, I think it's an exceptional Convalmore, and an exceptional whisky in general. With water: it improved further. I hadn't thought that was possible. Better stop here or I'm going to get geographical. Finish: long, ample, citrusy and honeyed. Perfect. Comments: after nearly 10,000 whiskies, I'm starting to wonder if single casks aren't better for young whiskies, and small or semi-small batches better for older ones. Well I'm dead sure 'bout that. Superb bottling, not to be missed IMHO. SGP:651 - 94 points.

(with thanks to Ivar)

More tasting notes Check the index of all Convalmore I've tasted so far







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